TWELVE consultancy firms, 10 of them owned by British parent companies, are being invited to pre-qualify for the design of controversial road widening works at Tai Lam, along the Tuen Mun highway. The British-owned firms are: Atkins Haswell; Babtie BMT (Hong Kong); Binnie; Halcrow Asia Partnership; High-Point Rendel (HK); Hyder Consulting; Maunsell Consultants; Mott Connell; Mouchel Asia; and Scott Wilson Kirkpatrick. Local company, Pypun Engineering Consultants and American-owned design firm, Parsons Brinckerhoff Asia, are also being asked to pre-qualify. Once the firms have lodged pre-qualification documents, the Highways Department will draw up a short-list of firms which will be invited to tender for the design work. The scheme was postponed last year after the original contractors, Balfour Beatty-Shui On, won a mediation claim against the Government over its $511 million design and build contract. The Government has now decided to go ahead with preparation of detailed designs ready for construction to restart once the Route 3 Country Park section opens in 1998.